Federation of Ontario Public Libraries

These links below are also on the FOPL OpenMediaDesk Facebook Group.
They are ones we should have on every library social media account this week. #LibrariesCare
Our OpenMediaDesk team encourages you to localize these resources as much as possible and also provide direction on local social services, help lines, faith initiatives, and charities.  Your website and social media are powerful communications channels that can make a BIG difference in amplifying the resources and services available!
With the – we hope temporary – loss of so many retired and senior volunteers for shut-ins, homeless and food banks, some libraries are re-deploying (and paying) their staff to volunteer for local help and service agencies to make wellness calls and more. This is a crisis and public libraries are awesome patrners!
Please make sure your contact your local government and service agency partners (if you haven’t already).  Keep in touch.  If you have staff who cannot wok from home on library-oriented tasks, consider a call for volunteers to be paid by the library but work shifts to help food banks with food packing, deliveries, and wellness calls.  You too can be part of the solution and free up our social service professionals to do the deeper work with our homeless, economically, mobility, socially, and mentally challenged residents.  Much like we quietly do every day in our branches. #LibrariesCare

Find a Food Bank

Feed Ontario is a network of 130 member food banks and over 1,100 affiliate hunger-relief programs and agencies across the province that serves nearly 335,000 people every month. You can find your closest Feed Ontario member food bank by searching with your postal code or address.
NOTE: Many of our food banks have modified their hours or service in response to public health advice regarding COVID-19. Please contact your local food bank directly for the most current information about how to access services.
If you cannot find your local food bank on this map, please visit 211Ontario.ca.

Feed Ontario (formerly Ontario Association of Food Banks)

Encourage Donation (Money & Food). All communities are experiencing shortages including needing volunteers

Get medical advice: Telehealth Ontario

Get fast, free medical advice through Telehealth Ontario at:
Toll-free: 1-866-797-0000
Toll-free TTY: 1-866-797-0007
In a medical emergency don’t call Telehealth. Call 911 immediately.
Ontario 211 is a free helpline that connects you to community and social services in your area 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, in over 150 languages.

Crisis Support for Abused Women & Seniors Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Isolation has long been a red flag in abusive relationships. A favourite in the abuser’s toolkit as a way to exert control and create distance between a woman and her friends and family. But what happens when isolation and social distancing are imposed out of necessity? Where can women turn for support? And what of Seniors who are so vulnerable to abuse when socially isolated?
During this time of crisis and uncertainty, the Assaulted Women’s Helpline (AWHL) and the Senior Safety Line (SSL) remain committed to delivering our 24/7 crisis counselling for women and seniors in the province of Ontario. As more community services reduce their hours or close their doors over the next few weeks, our crisis lines remain open and our dedicated counsellors are ready to help support women and seniors throughout this chaotic period. Sadly we have seen an increase in the number of calls that simply cannot get through because our lines are at capacity. As we may be the only place for women and seniors to turn for emotional support and crisis intervention during this extraordinary time, this is deeply concerning.

SHELTER FOR ABUSED WOMEN

Safe emergency accommodation for women who have experienced or are at risk of domestic violence. Most also provide a telephone crisis line, or call Assaulted Women’s Helpline 416-863-0511 or 1-866-863-0511 (TTY 1-866-863-7868).

CHILDREN’S AID SOCIETIES AND INDIGENOUS CHILD AND FAMILY WELL-BEING AGENCIES

CHILDREN’S AID SOCIETIES AND INDIGENOUS CHILD AND FAMILY WELL-BEING AGENCIES IN ONTARIO ARE CONTINUING THEIR CHILD PROTECTION SERVICES. WE ARE NOT CLOSED. ALTHOUGH AGENCIES ACROSS THE PROVINCE HAVE MODIFIED THEIR BUSINESS PRACTICES TO RESPOND TO HEALTH AND SAFETY CONCERNS, THEIR CORE PROTECTION SERVICES CONTINUE. IF ANY MEMBER OF THE PUBLIC OR PROFESSIONAL HAVE A CONCERN ABOUT THE SAFETY AND/OR WELL-BEING OF A CHILD OR YOUTH UNDER 18, THEY SHOULD IMMEDIATELY CONTACT THEIR LOCAL CHILDREN’S AID SOCIETIES OR INDIGENOUS CHILD AND FAMILY WELL-BEING AGENCY.

LOCAL CONTACT INFORMATION FOR THESE AGENCIES IS AVAILABLE HERE.

TALK SAVES LIVES

Mental Health and COVID-19

Self-injury & suicide Hotline

Free, Confidential, & Anonymous 24/7 Counselling & Info For Teens. Professional Counsellors.

Kids Help Phone | KidsHelpPhone.ca‎

Text, Online Chat & 24/7 Phone Support for Youth. Confidential & Free. 24-Hour Help Line. Anonymous & Confidential. Professional Counsellors. Highlights: Offer 24/7 National Service, Offer Professional Counselling, Offer Text-Based Support To Young People, Created In 1989.

Homeless Shelters

Here is a Toronto link but find out what the options are locally for your ‘residents’.